As I write this, I am once again a prisoner of my apartment, this time virtually. I can go outside to any place in Paris I want, but I am disconnected from the world, from the Internet, from the telephone, from heat, anything involving electricity, but I’ll get into why I am super pissed in a few moments.
I woke up this morning at ten o’clock, well-refreshed and eager to begin my day of not doing much. As I had my second delicious bowl of Cheerios, I watched an incredibly offensive show called Popetown. It’s a cartoon that takes place in Vatican City and is so ridiculously ill-mannered that it only lasted for one season. Of course offensive and bad mannered equal comedy gold for me, so I enjoyed it. I mean, how often do you get to see a cartoon nun kick a wheelchair or a cartoon Pope do standup comedy? Not often.
For the next segment I am writing in my book, I need a church, so I went location scouting today. I can’t really write well if I haven’t been somewhere, so I chose to go to La Madeleine first, and found it to be perfect.
The 8 line has amazing trains. They are wide, with tons of space, and each chair is plush, it’s like riding a moveable recliner. It’s great.
From the outside, it is an imposing structure, very Greek and unreligious looking. On the inside, though, it becomes very Godlike. As I entered the structure, I was immediately struck by how unbelievably dark it was inside. It had only a few electric lights, but the rest was lit by candles and the dark windows that were cut into the ceiling, which didn’t reveal much light on this cloudy day. Being so dark, you couldn’t really tell where some of the walls or ceiling stopped, so it looked as if it stretched on infinitely. A very interesting effect.
Inside each of the small chapels within the church, a bum was sleeping. Only one per chapel, completely passed out. It was kind of funny, and a very comfortable place to catch up on your rest.
I walked around, realized that it was the perfect place for my story, and left. Much to my delight, when I was walking down the street, I ran right into the fashion quarter. On my left, Ralph Lauren, to my right, Dior and Chanel. It was fun to window shop with the rest of the Parisians. I kept my eyes peeled for Karl Lagerfeld, but knew I wouldn’t see him, and didn’t.
One of the windows was completely devoted to a sale on silverware (still wildly overpriced) and the display was amazing. It showed a mannequin flinging knives, forks, and spoons at another mannequin.
As I walked down the street, I ran into Place de la Concorde and every Parisian who owned a camera. You see, for the first time in a long time, we’ve had a really pretty sunset. And the sunset behind the Eiffel Tower was truly spectacular. People were stopping traffic and stepping out of their cars in the middle of the roads to get the picture. Others were running maniacally around trying to find the perfect angle. It was amazing to watch. The French really do appreciate a good sunset, it seems.
I was done for the day, so I headed down to the train. At the dock, there was a woman who seemed translucent, you could see every vein and blood vessel under her skin. It was odd. The train was the fullest I have ever seen it. There was literally no space, but I forced myself into the vast sea of foreigners.
I made a pasta dish with some things left in my cupboard and watched Craig Ferguson. I was all happy, then called mother. In the middle of my conversation, I heard a loud click, and then nothing. All of the power had shut down. This turned off my heat, my lights, my television, my Internet, and my phone. I am completely unable to contact anybody.
I decided to wait for a half hour or so to see if it would come on by itself. When it didn’t I began to get very worried. I wrote down all my emergency numbers that I am ironically unable to call, in case my computer ran out of power before I could get it back on. There is a box of switches I can flip, but I don’t know what to do with them, so I went downstairs to find Mme Santos, the guardienne of the apartment. She is the person that you go to for your packages and for any problems. She wasn’t there, naturally. So I climbed back upstairs and knocked on the door of my neighbor. The dogs barked frantically at me, but nobody would answer the door. I knocked on the door of another neighbor, but they refused to answer as well. Very upset and confused I went back to my apartment.
I looked at the switches and flipped a couple of them, but nothing happened. I didn’t know what to do. I decided to walk around outside to look for a public telephone that I knew wouldn’t exist. I went down to the Tabac and asked if they had a phone I could use, they didn’t for some reason. I went to the bakery and asked them if I could use their phone. They told me to go to the phone store next door. I don’t want to buy a freaking phone! I went to the Metro, but there was nobody behind the counter.
I didn’t know what to do, so I just came back to the apartment and sat in the dark. I am still doing that. I have become very depressed and frustrated. I can’t do anything. All of the shops are closed, nobody will help me, not one person, and the telephone won’t work. If I had a phone, I could call the convenient emergency number, but not this time. This is stupid. I am very, very, upset.
I don’t really know what I am going to do now, I guess wait until the morning and then look for the nonexistent phone again. All of the stores will be closed, so that will make it easier… Maybe I’ll just go to Notre Dame and ask to use their phone. That’s the nicest place I’ve found in Paris, so far. I really don’t know.
Whenever this is posted, I hope that I haven’t died or something. I want to come home.
I have managed to regain power. In my head, as I was sitting alone in the dark, an image popped up of one of the switches. I don’t know if it was a sign from God or something, but I went to the box, and the image in my head matched one of the switches perfectly. I turned it, and beautiful lights cascaded through my apartment. As of now, I have power. This had better never happen again. It ages me far too quickly.